Abby’s love of music and its effect on people has made teaching and performing a driving force in her life. She holds an undergraduate degree in Psychology and a Masters Degree in Education. In 2001 she formed “Abby Burke featuring The Manly Band”, and in 2005 released her debut album which drew rave reviews. She has performed in Opera (with credits including Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess” and the 2005 premier of Marcus Hummon’s “Surrender Road”) and in theater (“Ain’t Misbehavin'” with the Tennessee Rep). She broke racial barriers at The Alabama Theater in Myrtle Beach, SC by becoming the first African-American performing artist to participate in their “One for the Holidays Spectacular.” In 2005 she received the Individual Artist Fellowship in Vocal Performance from the Tennessee Arts Commission. Abby has performed with Patti LaBelle, Englebert Humperdink, Tim Curry, Donald Byrd and his Black Birds, and Beegie Adair, and has performed for former Vice President Al Gore. Abby teaches vocal performance at NJW.